JB Hi-Fi now a top global retailer

In Deloitte retail report.

JB Hi-Fi has joined the ranks of Deloitte’s top 250 global retailers. Its inaugural entry at 218th position brings the number of Australian retailers in the latest world ranking of the sector to three with Woolworths and Wesfarmers ranked at 21 and 23 respectively. Wal-Mart retained it number one position while Amazon lifted its ranking from 10 to 6.

With annual revenues of US$4.2 billion, JB Hi-Fi growth has been driven both by consistent year-on-year comparative sales and the acquisition of The Good Guys in November 2016 which accounted for AU$1.25 billion of additional sales in FY17.

Now in its 21st year, the Global Powers of Retailing 2018 report identifies the 250 largest retailers globally by revenue and also examines current global trends and economic prospects. There are now 38 top 250 global retailers operating in Australia, one lower than last year with Lowe’s Inc, exiting its operations with the closure of Masters Home Improvement. However, 2018 could be pivotal for many retailers, paticularly following the long-anticipated arrival of Amazon.

“In 2017 we saw a retail market that was growing overall, but at the same time, the level of competition amongst retailers also continued to increase,” Deloitte’s Retail, Wholesale & Distribution Group, national leader, David White said. “With the increase in competition from both international and domestic retailers, we can expect to see further consolidation in the sector.”

He said while Amazon’s initial launch of its on-shore business didn’t have the big bang effect some commentators were expecting those who underestimate the online retailer do so at their peril.

“As Amazon builds out its infrastructure and services in Australia in 2018, we can expect its presence and influence on the market to grow significantly, particularly in the second half of the year and in the lead-up to Christmas. We’ll have to wait and see the ultimate impact of Amazon’s on-shore business in Australia, but it’s important to remember this also creates opportunities for Australian retailers.” He said if Amazon continues to grow at its current rate, it will become the second largest retailer within two years.

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